'Dome staffers lovin' L.A.

TARINA WHITE -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 11:23 AM ET

Busy pouring beer and serving hotdogs when the team's on home ice, many of the most passionate Calgary Flames fans miss out on the live action.

That changed this weekend when 70 Saddledome employees, from concession staff to security, flew to L.A. to cheer on the team from the stands.

Concession worker Cheryl Hodgson is among the throng of Flames' jersey-clad supporters who headed south on Friday to wind up the two last games of the regular season in style.

"We're having a blast," she told the Sun yesterday from the crew's Hilton hotel digs.

Before the puck dropped in last night's game against the L.A. Kings, the group warmed up playing hockey outside the Staples Centre.

"We're all pumped," said Hodgson.

The trip also included seats at Monday's tilt between the Flames and Anaheim Mighty Ducks, return airfare and four nights accommodation. In between games, the employees are spending time at Universal Studios and Disneyland.

Cheryl's husband, Dan, said he's "a little jealous" to be left at home in Calgary, but added this is the only chance his wife will get to watch an entire Flames' game live. "This is kind of a reward for them to see a game," said Dan.

Though organized and mostly paid for by employees, the team kicks in a portion of cash for the annual trip, said Flames president and CEO Ken King.

"They're very good people and they work very hard," said King.

The players are pumped to know the staff travelled to watch them play.

"It's wonderful seeing people supporting the team," said King.


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